Fri Jan V*
First day of full lessons eg 5 periods (shortened). T/D not as bad as I thought. Mrs Krzanich** is a bit of a bitch. Mrs Stewart not a lot better. Came home and did homework for Mr Va***, Mr Bc and Mrs Kz. Went swimming with Tony Burton. Threw some girls in the pool, they threw us in. After I left Tony got thrown out for throwing some girls**** sister in – he’d been thrown out for that before!
Trains = 32
*I had a brain freeze and began redating things as ‘Jan’
** I originally wrote ‘Krzanovich’ and then crossed out the ‘ov’
*** Similarly, this originally read ‘Vd’ rather than ‘Va’
**** The words ‘some girls’ are written above a crossed out name, which I think was ‘Jo’
You’re going to have to get used to the abbreviations. Each teacher at MAGS was known by a two letter shorthand for their surname that was almost a proto-textspeak.
Mrs Krzanich (Kz) was our Social Studies teacher. I did think she was awful to begin with, but soon learned that she was tough but fair. In fact, if there was one lesson which I should’ve learned on this trip and didn’t it was that the people I learned most from were the ones that pushed me the hardest and that those I actually liked didn’t get anything like the same results out of me.
Mrs Stewart (Sw) was very young and taught English. By the time I left I had fallen slightly in love with her – a couple of years later I wrote a song about her called ‘Adrienne’ – and I clearly wasn’t the only one as she eventually did run off with a pupil from the school (or so I am told).
Maths was taught by Mr Van Damm (Va – you can see why ‘Vd’ wouldn’t work!), a stocky, moustachioed individual who also ran the rowing club. Even then I got the impression that he was slightly in awe of Dad.
Our form teacher was Mr Beechey (Bc), who also taught us science. He was English, from East Anglia, and looked very similar to Graeme Garden in his Goodies heyday. He did take great care to make sure that I fitted in to the school and I have always been grateful to him for that.
‘T/D’ refers to ‘technical drawing’, which I took as an option subject even though I had never done it before. Prior to leaving England I had had to choose the subjects I would study at O Level and the school insisted that one of these had to be an arts and crafts type of course. Which didn’t suit me at all as I was useless at that sort of thing. I chose T/D as it was the nearest thing on offer to the course I had selected at home, Design Technology, and in truth I was far better at it than I expected.
Finally, the crossing out of the girl’s name. I know that I liked her, but she was a sort of Lucy van Pelt character and I went off her before the swimming pool closed, so I crossed her name out of my diary (I guess she must have particularly annoyed me one day!) and now cannot remember what it was.